Feasibility of pancreaticoduodenectomy in a nonuniversity tertiary care center: What are the key elements of success?

Amit Khithani, Derick Christian, Kevin Lowe, A. Joe Saad, Jeffrey D. Linder, Paul Tarnasky, D. Rohan Jeyarajah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


It is advocated that a favorable outcome for pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD) is related to a high volume at university centers. This article examines the specific elements that allow an equivalent outcome from PD in a nonuniversity tertiary care center (NUTCC). The study was performed to: 1) evaluate the outcome of PDs done at a NUTCC; 2) study the components of the process that are required to attain success in a NUTCC; and 3) provide a new look at the volume-outcome relationships in complex surgeries in a novel nonuniversity setting.Medical records of patients who underwent PD by a single surgeon between September 2005 and August 2008 at a high-volume NUTCC were analyzed. The records were reviewed with respect to preoperative and postoperative data, 30-day mortality, morbidity, and histopathology data. A total of 122 patients underwent PD. The mean age was 68.2 years. Jaundice was the most common presenting symptom in 57 per cent (69 patients). Thirty-nine patients (32%) underwent a pylorus-preserving PD. The mean operative time was 237 minutes. The mean estimated blood loss was 480 mL. The mean length hospital stay was 13 days. Thirty-day mortality was 3.2 per cent (four patients) and overall morbidity was 49 per cent. The key factors in developing a team dedicated to the care of the patient undergoing PD are discussed. A center of excellence can be developed in a NUTCC resulting in outcomes that meet and indeed may exceed nationally reported benchmarks. The key elements to success include a team approach to the patient undergoing PD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)545-551
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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